2017 Official Tennessee Vacation Guide Honors Musical Milestones of Garth Brooks & Ryman Auditorium

Wednesday, January 18, 2017 | 10:00am

NASHVILLE, Jan. 11, 2017 --- The Tennessee Department of Tourist Development today released its 2017 Official Tennessee Vacation Guide, featuring Tennessee Ambassador of Goodwill Garth Brooks on the famed stage at Nashville’s Ryman Auditorium, which celebrates its 125th Anniversary this year.

More than 550,000 guides are available to inspire potential guests to book a trip filled with authentic experiences that are part of “The Soundtrack of America. Made in Tennessee.” The 2017 Official Tennessee Vacation Guide is available free of charge at any of Tennessee’s 14 Welcome Centers or by calling 1-800-GO2-TENN (462-8366), and can also be ordered or downloaded online at www.tnvacation.com/guide.

Brooks was named an official Tennessee Ambassador of Goodwill by Governor Bill Haslam in October 2016, in honor of his becoming the first artist in music history to earn seven Diamond Awards—recognizing seven albums selling 10 million or more copies each—from the Recording Industry Association of America.

October also was the first time in his record-setting career that Brooks had ever performed at the Ryman, which opened as the Union Gospel Tabernacle in 1892 and is known around the world as “the mother church of country music.”

“Two icons. That is what we have here,” said Commissioner Kevin Triplett, Tennessee Department of Tourist Development. “On one hand, Garth Brooks, a seven-Diamond artist and without question one of the greatest ambassadors the state of Tennessee could have. On the other, The Ryman, one of the world’s most famous music destinations. It is an honor to have both grace the cover of this year’s Tennessee Vacation Guide. It is a banner year for Tennessee in 2017 in which we celebrate no fewer than a dozen notable music anniversaries. That includes 60th anniversaries of STAX Records in Memphis and RCA’s famed Studio B in Nashville, the 75th anniversary of the song ‘Chattanooga Choo Choo,’ and the 50th anniversary of the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum. All further evidence the soundtrack of America is made in Tennessee.”

Tennessee singer/songwriter Peter Cooper authored a retrospective on the Ryman Auditorium for the guide, joining a number of noted writers profiling the places, people and events that attract more than 100 million visitors to Tennessee annually.

Additional highlights in the 212-page Tennessee Vacation Guide include the 90th Anniversary of the original 1927 Bristol Sessions, known as “the big bang of country music,” and the 50th Anniversary of the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum, as well as new attractions such as an entertainment complex at Elvis Presley’s Graceland in Memphis, Songbirds Guitar Museum in Chattanooga and the luxury hotel—The Tennessean—in Knoxville. Tennessee’s Smoky Mountains are also featured on the cover, encouraging visitors to support these “Mountain Tough” communities as they rebound from November’s wildfires.

This year’s guide is expanded to include six feature sections showcasing Tennessee’s  scenic beauty, creative spirit, unique experiences, culinary excellence, history, and, of course, music. The guide also promotes Discover Tennessee Trails & Byways, which connect the state’s major cities to the hidden gems of its smaller towns, state parks and natural beauty that lie off the beaten path. A compilation of annual events, regional overviews, maps and destination listings rounds out the guide.

For bulk requests of the 2017 Official Tennessee Vacation Guide, contact tourdev@tn.gov.


The mission of the Tennessee Department of Tourist Development is to motivate travel to and within Tennessee by inspiring enjoyment, creating memories, producing a desire to return, and establishing key, long-term relationships that result in visitors becoming residents. The promise of Tennessee—the birthplace of the blues, bluegrass, country, gospel, soul, rockabilly, and rock ‘n’ roll—is to be the global music destination of choice. To deliver an unparalleled experience of beauty, history, and family adventure, infused with music that creates a vacation that is the “Soundtrack of America. Made in Tennessee.”

Explore more at tnvacation.com and join other Tennessee travelers by following “TNVacation” on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram and YouTube, and “Tennessee” on Snapchat.